Book Eating in the Bible April 10, 2015Author: Beach Combing | in : Ancient , trackback
***Dedicated to KMH who came up with this link***
A recent post looked at Bible sandwiches, the idea of eating the Bible to cure yourself from ills or poison. The average reader might raise their eyebrows and wonder what the scriptural basis for that is. This was Beach’s residual-protestant reaction but, then, to his shock, he learnt that there is book eating in the Bible. The following comes from the book of Ezekiel, Ezekiel being, of course, the prophet of exile.
But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee. And when I [Ezekiel] looked, behold, an hand was sent unto me; and, lo, a roll of a book was therein; And he spread it before me; and it was written within and without: and there was written therein lamentations, and mourning, and woe. Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, eat that thou findest; eat this roll, and go speak unto the house of Israel. So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll. And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.
The sequel to this is in book ten of Revelations, just so there is no carping about the Jewish versus the Christian tradition.
Then the voice which I heard from heaven spoke to me again and said, ‘Go, take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel who stands on the sea and on the earth.’ So I went to the angel and said to him, ‘Give me the little book.’ And he said to me, ‘Take and eat it; and it will make your stomach bitter, but it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth.’ Then I took the little book out of the angel’s hand and ate it, and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth. But when I had eaten it, my stomach became bitter. And he said to me, ‘You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings.’
Found these passages not only surprising but beautiful: ingestion is perhaps the most powerful metaphor, memories of flag eating: drbeachcombing AT yahoo DOT com Other Bible eating?